University’s decision to remove scale from gym raises questions

An Ottawa university has raised eyebrows and ire by opting to remove the scale from its primary athletic facility.

Carleton University pulled the scale out earlier this month in a bid to shift focus away from weight and onto a more holistic view of health.

Bruce Marshall, the university’s manager of wellness programs, said Carleton was following what he called an emerging trend away from having scales in workout facilities.

He said weight alone is not a good health marker and said many fitness facilities, including Carleton’s, were actively moving away from a focus on weight.

But the move has prompted considerable backlash both from the Carleton community and beyond, with people criticizing the university for removing a basic fitness tool and others lambasting the school for pandering to oversensitive students.

Marshall says the university is reviewing its decision and says it’s considering reinstating scales in less prominent locations.

“We provided some educational information on various health measurements as we are hoping to shift the focus away from weight,” Marshall said in a statement. “We are listening to feedback and we will review further.”

One major Canadian chain said the practice of having a scale in fitness centres still appears to be the norm.

Kim Lavender, national director of team training with GoodLife Fitness, said scales are still available in the company’s more than 300 facilities across the country, adding that scales are also still common sights at other facilities she visits.

But, she said, GoodLife and other fitness clubs would likely agree with Carleton’s stance that weight plays only a limited role in good health management.

Lavender likened the debate over scales to one that raged years ago about the presence of mirrors in workout facilities.

She said some providers opted to remove mirrors from busy workout areas after customers voiced concerns about sending negative messages about body image.

Just Posted

Mothers Against Drunk Driving hold candlelight vigil

Four-and-a-half years ago Marilyn Rinas’ husband was killed in a collision with… Continue reading

Thousands expected at memorial for fallen police officer in Abbotsford, B.C.

ABBOTSFORD, B.C. — The streets of Abbotsford, B.C., will be lined with… Continue reading

One person dead, five others injured in early-morning crash in Kingston, Ont.

KINGSTON, Ont. — A man who was checking the damage on his… Continue reading

Gus is a special, collaborative art exhibit inspired by motherhood

The portrait display by mother and son is showing in Red Deer

Robotics challenge sparks student interest in Red Deer

Student-built robots compete in fun challenge

Chicken crosses B.C. road, stops traffic

Rooster makes early morning commuters wait in Maple Ridge

Red Deerian honours her brother who died in a motorcycle collision

Houaida Haddad is encouraging Red Deer residents to donate blood

Red Deer County firefighters to be recognized for Waterton help

RCMP brass will give formal recognition Monday

Ron James tries to lighten humanity’s load through humour

The comedian returns to Red Deer for shows Dec. 1 and 2

100+ Women Red Deer donate to Christmas Bureau

About $14,000 will help with Christmas hampers and toys

Semi collides with vehicle on Highway 2 north of Ponoka

Members of the Ponoka Integrated Traffic Unit dealt with a call on Highway 2 north of Ponoka

After 70 years, Red Deer veteran still remembers his traumatic war experience

Frank Krepps feels lucky to have survived the Second World War

Merritt Mountie charged with assault

Charges are in relation to an incident in May at the detachment, B.C. Prosecution Service said

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month